Vietnam is a Southeast Asian country known for its exotic islands, beaches, national parks, temples and historical sites. Every part of Vietnam celebrates its complex history without losing touch with the modern world. Vietnam is home to breathtaking islets, traditional villages, lush green forests, unexplored grottoes, mystic caves and even sand dunes! Over the years the country has undergone massive development but it hasn't overshadowed their age-old culture and traditions. Thus, Vietnam strikes a perfect balance between the past and the future.
Ho Chi Minh City
Ho Chi Minh City is the main hub in the southern region. The dynamic cityscapes reflect the country’s past and future. The Chinese neighborhood known as Cho Lon is worth a visit Binh Tay Market and Thien Hau Pagoda. Ho Chi Minh City is an excellent place to experience the vibrant nightlife in Vietnam. Buon Ma Thuot, the coffee capital of Vietnam, is an ideal place to experience the rustic charm of the country. To enjoy quaint nightlife away from bustling cities you can visit Hoi An. This ancient coastal town reflects old world charm through its ancient style buildings and architectural marvels. Ha Noi has its roots deep into the country’s colonial history. As you pass the colonial facades and historical places the past is subconsciously merged with the present. Yet, the city will surprise you with its modern cafes, rooftop bars and world-class restaurants.
Vietnam has a long war history which must be explored by everyone. The Military History Museum provides a glimpse into the past of this country through its exhibitions of military weapons. The War Remnants Museum displays a variety of armoured vehicles, weapons, tanks, and artillery items. There is also a separate section displaying photographs and posters of different global anti-war movements. Imperial Citadel of Thang Long is a vintage fortress that resembles the remnants of Vietnamese military power. It houses different relics of palaces, age-old roads, coins and war remnants. To learn about the different ethnic groups of Vietnam, you must visit the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology. Constructed in 1997, this museum's architecture further enhances the brilliance of its exhibitions. Saigon Opera House, built in 1897, is an architectural marvel where you can enjoy ballet, symphony orchestra and opera performances. The Complex of Hue Monuments, Tomb of Khai Dinh, Cu Chi Tunnels, Notre Dame Cathedral, Saigon Central Post Office, Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum are some of the other places with immense historical importance.
Phu Quoc Island is the biggest island in Vietnam known for its beautiful sand beaches and palm trees. There are hundreds of resorts offering amazing recreational facilities that ensure you relax and unwind. You can explore the smaller islands surrounding this main island on kayaks and boats all the while enjoying splendid views of the setting sun and tranquil waves. You can even go fishing in the fishing village and get to immerse yourself in the unique culture of the island. Con Dao Islands are an archipelago of 15 uninhabited islets situated in the southern coast of Vietnam. Out of these only Con Son is inhibited. Each of these islets offer expansive beaches shaded with evergreen trees. The hiking trails in the isolated main island makes it even more adventurous. Cu Lao Cham Island is known for being rich in marine biodiversity. The amazing landscapes call for adventure activities such as scuba diving, swimming, snorkelling and coral spotting. Cat Ba Island, the largest island in Halong Bay, is a hub for adventurous water sports. If you seek solitude, rent a kayak or speedboat to Lan Ha Bay and Monkey Island, where the beaches are quieter. Some other scenic islands include Hon Tre Island and Ly Son in Central Vietnam, Vung Tau Island, Ba Lua Islands and Nam Du Island in South Vietnam.
Blessed with so many islands, Vietnam is home to many scenic beaches. My Khe Beach in Da Nang, Ong Lang Beach in Phu Quoc, Lang Co Beach in Hue, An Hai Beach in Con Dao Island and An Bang Beach in Hoi An are some of the most serene beaches in Vietnam that are perfect to enjoy the tropical weather of the country to its fullest.
A major part of all three regions of Vietnam can be explored in 5 to 8 days. Starting from Ho Chi Minh City, you can spend a day or two exploring the city, majestic islands, pristine beaches, national parks, and nearby tourist attractions. Moving upwards, explore the central highlands and ancient towns such as Hoi An and Nha Trang. There are several historical sites, beaches, and famous local markets in this region. Further, to the last part of your trip, explore the northern region as it is graced with bountiful nature and historical places. You can spend a day in Hanoi exploring the city, its heritage sites, temples and lake. If you seek adventure then spending a day or two experimenting with different adventurous activities at Ha Long Bay and Sapa will make your trip memorable.